The Surprising Source Of Inspiration For The OA

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Netflix series The OA seems to have arrived from left field. The show's premise is slightly confusing, and raises a whole host of important questions, but its source is shockingly simple. Show star Brit Marling, who created the show alongside Zal Batmanglij, met a woman at a party. Here's how she describes the encounter to Vulture. "In a crowded room, [Marling] noticed a stranger standing still, unperturbed by the surrounding social chaos: 'She had a kind of radical autonomy and awareness.' The woman told her that she had died once, on a gurney in a hospital awaiting surgery, and that she had left her body and floated above, with a bird’s-eye POV of the hospital rooms and corridors. 'She said she felt an interconnectivity,' recalls Marling. 'The only thing she thought about was, Did I tell the people I love how much I love them?'"

That's actually an incredible moment. And lends credence to my personal belief that a great party can change the world. More importantly, it shows how close the show came to utter creative disaster. What if Marling had been at a party with Heaven is for Real author Colton Burpo? We would have been treated to a rainbow Jesus riding in on a unicorn. Actually, that might have been considerably better.

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